There’s not much that the U.S. Senate’s top Republican and top Democrat agree on. But one of the few things that fosters bipartisan cooperation in Washington, D.C. these days is cannabis.
On Friday, Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY) announced that he’s signing on as a cosponsor of a hemp legalization bill introduced last month by Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY).
“It’s a crock,” Schumer said, referring to current federal law. “It makes no sense that the DEA is the primary regulator, and that they stop farmers and investors from growing hemp. Why are we buying hemp from other countries, when we have hundreds of acres that could be grown right here in our backyard?”
Hemp products like clothing and foods are legal to buy and sell in the U.S., but its cultivation is prohibited, meaning that those consumer goods must be made from imported crops.
McConnell’s legislation, which already has 10 other senators signed on, would remove hemp from the definition of marijuana, its psychoactive cousin, under the Controlled Substances Act.
Advocates are hopeful that the teaming up of the usually quarreling party leaders on hemp bodes well for further cannabis reforms. [Read more at Forbes]